DIY ornaments to show off your collections

These super cute ornaments are sooooo easy to make. You can find clear ornaments at your local Michaels or Joann store. These came in a pack of six.

They are a fun and simple to make. Perhaps a good craft project to do with the little ones? The nice thing about these ornaments is they don’t have to be strictly for the holidays.

Just raid your collection of buttons, seashells, ribbon, glitter, whatever fits through the opening of your ornaments. Remove the top and fill it up. So much pretty!

DIY handstitched doorstops and bookends

Make a doorstop or a few bookends in your favorite colors. All you need is a brick, some felt, a needle, maybe buttons for eyes and some floss in a coordinating color. This project is super easy.

Step 1: Stitch something cute in the center of your base color. For ours, I used a bird. You can cut out the shape you want. Or maybe cut out your initials or spell out your name? You can use felt for the topper or scrap fabric. If you want to you can stitch a border around the image.

Step 2: Wrap the brick with your base piece of felt, carefully placing your topper in the center. Just fold the felt as though wrapping a gift.

Step 3: Stitch it all together. Don’t worry if your stitches aren’t fancy. (I didn’t. Lol) The bottom won’t show anyway. Done!

Arm Party gold

Who hearts bracelets? Everybody, obviously. I’ve been trying all sorts of new methods out thanks to all the DIY bracelet projects on Pinterest. (Remember my neon macrame adventures?) So when I found out about the Arm Party courtesy of Leonora and Illy, I eagerly signed up.

My partner, Chelsea, sent me two fun and trendy pieces – one in gold and black, the other in blue and gold. Thank you, Chelsea! (Btw, she wrote a post on how to DIY that blue and gold braided beauty.)

A certain baby boy I know really kicks up a storm when I hold this bracelet up to current residence. 🙂

Chelsea’s website is fab. Can we talk about her drool-worthy recipes for a minute? This Strawberry Pie sounds and looks shut-the-front-door amazeballs. I almost licked the screen for real. And she provides a super cute free 4 x 6 recipe card download. Delicious.

Speaking of freebie printables, Leonora offers some great ones on her site. If you know me, you know I’m hooked on to-do lists. Leonora’s got some that will make you want to look at your list. My favorites are the blue and red lists. Hilarious and beautifully designed.

While you’re writing that to-do list, be sure to check out Illy’s sweet Etsy shop. It’s full of adorable headbands, earrings and more. How cute are her bows?

Follow all three lovely ladies on twitter and keep up with all their awesome: @YellowHeartArt @muchloveilly @two_twenty_one.

baby food jars + craft supplies = an easy upcycled DIY

There are thousands of small items in my studio. Little craft items I need to store usually end up in a Ziploc baggie or one of several mismatched boxes.

Now I’ve got awesome upcycled containers that function better and make it way easier to find what I’m looking for. All these baby food jars needed was a good wash and a coat of spray paint on their lids.

I especially love these for the tiny letters I use to make custom notebooks for my shop. Rather than searching for ages to find the letters I need, I’ve split the letters (a-d in one jar, e-h in another, etc.). Talk about a time saver!

The jar of brads may be the prettiest one in my collection. I just love that it’s so easy to see what’s inside so I can quickly get to what I’m looking for.

Ask your friends with little ones to start saving baby food jars for you for your projects. This works with larger jars too. Your pasta jar can hold ribbon, crayons, paper scraps, etc. What is your favorite storage solution?

a simple no-sew DIY to give old sandals new life

I heart this little DIY. It’s perfect for us frugalistas who can’t go out and buy a new pair of shoes for every outfit. The best part of this version? It isn’t permanent. No sewing. No glue. Just safety pins and a few minutes.

What you need:

  • a pair of flip flops or sandals
  • 8 small safety pins
  • scissors
  • ribbon or 1-inch fabric strips

Wrap the ribbon or fabric strips around each strap.

Pin the fabric or ribbon to itself inside so it doesn’t show. (Use scissors to snip any loose threads from fabric strips, if that’s what you use.) This is a great opportunity to upcycle some old fabric too.

You can change the colors to match the season, an outfit, whatever presents itself. Yay for easy and versatile projects!

DIY washi tape tealights

I have this big bag of tealight candles. I bust them out on days like today, when I’m boiling eggs and don’t want the whole house to stink.

It occurred to me today that these plain little candles could be really pretty when wrapped with my collection of awesome washi tape.

All I did was carefully wrap the candle with the tape. It’s super easy. I think I’m going to always use washi tape on my tealights now. They are soooo much more fun like this!

If you’re looking for a washi tape resource, my favorites are Omiyage and PrettyTape. All the tape featured in this post came from those two shops. What is your favorite washi project?

simple + shiny DIY: she sprays seashells with silver spray paint

I always collect seashells when I visit a beach. And then they end up scattered around the house or collecting dust in a dish somewhere.

This DIY is a fun and simple way to make these little souvenirs really shine.

Just place the shells on newspaper or wax paper outside. Shake up your favorite spray paint and coat the shells. (Be sure you rinsed the shells well so any sand and dust is removed.) Let them dry and voilà! We used silver spray paint, but you could use whatever color suits your décor.

Imagine a mason jar filled with shells sprayed gold or various neon colors. How awesome would that be? What color(s) would you use?

DIY orange-infused oil

Today Zach made a batch of DIY orange-infused oil. He used olive oil and the zest of a tangelo. The whole house smelled like oranges while it was heating up. Yum!

It’s a pretty simple process. Peel the zest of the orange. Toss in to about half a cup of olive oil. We only wanted a little orange oil, so you may want to use more. Just be sure to add more zest if that’s the case.

Use a double boiler, if you have one. We don’t so Zach used one of our metal mixing bowls in a pot of water.

Let the zest and oil hang out in the heat for about 20 minutes.

Carefully pour into a jar for storage. We reuse pasta jars, so that’s what we used for our oil. For the right potency, Zach will repeat this process until the oil smells the way he wants it to.

Tomorrow, he will strain the oil through cheesecloth (you can try a coffee filter instead, but it will be much slower). He will throw away the old zest and repeat the process with the strained oil and new zest.

it’s a party, so come craft if you want to (and you know you do)

Attention artsy people: There’s one event you definitely don’t want to miss this month. This year brings the third annual Etsy Craft Party, a day when creative communities all over the world gather in the name of handmade fun.

This should be an international holiday, don’t you think? I’ve got the details for the big parties in Dallas and Fort Worth.

Dallas

Oil and Cotton is teaming with your favorite team (I know it’s mine), Etsy Dallas, for the big Craft Party in Dallas and you are invited. Gather all your crafty friends and prepare to get creative. The awesomeness includes two craft tables, raffle prizes, a photo booth, food and drinks. And the best part? It’s free! The craftiness takes place 7-9 p.m. Friday, August 24, 2012.

Getting there:
Oil and Cotton
837 W. 7th Street
Dallas, Texas 75208

Update: Two food trucks are scheduled for the Etsy Dallas Craft Party: Gandolfo’s New York Deli and Trailercakes. Yummy!

Fort Worth

Artful Mayhem Studio is hosting the Etsy Fort Worth Craft Party. Organizers ask that you RSVP if you are planning to attend. The Cowtown event includes a craft challenge contest, door prizes, make-and-take crafts, and potluck snacks and drinks. You’re invited to network with the creative community so bring your business cards and promos. This free party takes place 6-9 p.m. Friday, August 24, 2012.

Getting there:
Artful Mayhem Studio
228 S. Main Street
Keller, Texas 76248

How will you celebrate Craft Party 2012? Need a little inspiration? Check out this awesome Craft Party 2012 Kit for some fabulous DIY projects, templates, coupons and more!

DIY crescent roll s’mores

I’ve got the perfect project to celebrate Chocolate Chip Day (August 4) and National S’mores Day (August 10).

I made mine dairy-free, although you certainly aren’t obligated to do the same. Trust me, I’m serious about chocolate and would never steer you toward something that doesn’t taste good. These. Are. Amazing.

What you need:

  1. Bust out your crescent rolls(I put mine in the freezer for about 10 minutes while the oven preheated so they wouldn’t be too sticky while I put together the s’mores.)
  2. Get some marshmallows. We only had big marshmallows. I pulled these into fourths for easier s’more building. Mini marshmallows would be ideal.
  3. And, of course, you need chocolate. I used Enjoy Life mini chips. They were perfect for this recipe and they’re dairy-free.
  4. Also pull out your cookie sheet, foil (to avoid messes), and cooking spray (so your gooey treats will be easy to remove from the foil).

Here’s the quick and easy recipe:

Place some marshmallows and chocolate chips on the dough. Press the chips in a little and they won’t fall off when you roll up all the goodness. As you roll, add more chips between the layers for extra yum.

Be sure to pinch down the edges of the dough so the insides don’t come out. (As you can see below, things get a little messy when you don’t.) Bake as recommended on the crescent roll packaging.

Plate and enjoy! I have to say these are better than any s’mores I have ever eaten. Oh, and your home will smell like chocolate chip cookies.